In this issue



   - What’s coming up



Technical Presentation Review

-  Institution of Engineers




-  Minimum Finished Floor Levels



Wrap Up

   - See you next month



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Hello everyone and welcome to April edition of “Keep Things Flowing”, the monthly newsletter presented by Storm Water Consulting.

In this month’s edition of Keep Things Flowing, Darren reviews a technical presentation that he attended this month entitled “Is CFD Flood Modelling Within Our Reach” and we answer another frequently asked question.


Technical Presentation Review

This month I attended an Institution of Engineers technical session titled “Is CFD Flood Modelling within Our Reach?”  This session caught my attention because of my active interest in 3D graphical fluid simulations. I learnt the following concepts:

·         There is a distinct difference between traditional 3D fluid models and their more robust big brother CFD 3D fluid models.  The selection of the appropriate modelling tool comes down to the size of the required study area, the computational grunt available and the complexity of the flow regime being modelled.


·         OpenFOAM is an available open source CFD package that can be used for complex fluid simulations.


·         The results from OpenFOAM can be rendered using the 3D animation package Blender.


·         Some CFD software packages have their pitfalls or limitations.  Unfortunately the software vendors don’t always highlight these limitations prior to their customer investing a lot of money purchasing the software and a lot of time learning to use the software.  Therefore tread with caution.

I was particularly interested in the use of Blender as a fluid simulation rendering tool.  I had thought that I was venturing into new territory as a specialist hydraulics engineer when I started utilising this tool over 18 months ago.  It is great to see that I’m not alone in my efforts to use an animation package to add value to engineering data.  If you are interested you can view my fluid simulations using the following links:

1.     Flood water or Stormwater – Blender Fluid Simulation


2.     Flooded House – Blender Fluid Simulation


3.     Flooded Arcade – Blender Fluid Simulation


Frequently Asked Question


I’m developing my property located within the Brisbane City Council area. I’ve used Brisbane City Council’s interactive mapping and Floodwise property report data to determine that my property is inundated by two types of flood water:

1.     Brisbane River

2.     Overland Flow

The Floodwise property report states a flood level for the Brisbane River flood event, why hasn’t a minimum finished floor level therefore been identified?



Your initial investigations are a great way of identifying any potential flooding issues affecting your property. The level of flood water affecting your property has been identified by Brisbane City Council (BCC) through the use of hydraulic computer modelling and recently reported and historical flooding information. Generally if a property is only affected by Brisbane River flooding, a minimum finished floor level will be set in the Floodwise property report.

In this case your property is also subject to inundation from overland flow. Overland flow is runoff that travels across the land after it rains, either before entering a waterway, after breaking out of a waterway, or rising from the ground. There are a vast number of overland flow paths within the BCC precinct. Council does not have the resources to determine the flood level for every single overland flow path. Therefore a hydraulic engineer is required to determine the flood level due to overland flow and subsequent minimum finished floor level requirement.

The overland flow flood level may be higher than the Brisbane River flood level therefore both flood levels must be known before a minimum finished floor level can be identified.

If you are faced with this situation we can help by analysing the overland flow.


Wrap Up

We hope you enjoyed this edition of Keep Things Flowing. Feedback on articles presented is always welcomed and for further information on any of the articles presented please don’t hesitate to contact our office.

As always, Keep Things Flowing!

The Storm Team


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